Many articles on marital contracts these days (prenuptial and postnuptial agreements) get straight to the point stressing a couple important details.
Here’s one: Contrary to a longstanding and lingering belief, such agreements hardly merit a conclusive view that their execution dooms romance and an otherwise successful marriage from the outset.
In fact, many couples find that focusing on and following through with execution of a marital contract promotes certainty and stability. Discussing the rationale and merit for a prenup or postnup and timely crafting a tailored strategy relevant to future contingencies often averts rather than engenders marital conflict.
And here’s that other point: It is a widespread misconception that marital agreements only make sense for fabulously wealthy spouses holding a treasure trove of high-value assets.
Candidly, a prenuptial agreement executed before marriage or a postnuptial agreement inked following betrothal makes solid sense for a diverse demographic. Here are some examples of what a marital contract can do:
- Shield one spouse from the significant pre-marital debt (e.g., student loans) of the other
- Safeguard inheritance rights and future benefits that might flow from a family business
- Ensure intended safeguards applicable to children from a prior marriage
- Generally enhance communication on money matters during marriage and prevent acrimony that might otherwise ensue in a divorce
The decision to draft a prenup or postnup agreement is of course highly personal and dependent on the specific facts of a given case. A positive first step that many couples can take is to consult with a proven family legal team and become educated concerning the process and potential benefits of contract execution.